NASCAR team confirms key driver change for 2023

B.J. McLeod, Live Fast Motorsports, Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images)
B.J. McLeod, Live Fast Motorsports, Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, NASCAR (Photo by Eakin Howard/Getty Images) /

Not much has been announced about Live Fast Motorsports’ driver lineup for the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series, but there is one change that has been confirmed.

As one of the lesser funded teams in the NASCAR Cup Series, Live Fast Motorsports don’t generally generate tons of headlines when they make announcements, and that has been the case again ahead of their third season of competition at the sport’s top level.

The B.J. McLeod and Matt Tifft-owned team confirmed a manufacturer switch earlier this offseason, announcing that they will be aligning with Chevrolet for the 2023 season after spending their first two seasons with Ford.

Additionally, they confirmed a part-time driver for the No. 78 Ford-turned-Chevrolet. Josh Bilicki, who had been a part-time driver of the No. 77 Chevrolet for Spire Motorsports, is set to drive the car in four races during the 2023 season.

He is currently slated to compete in the races at Circuit of the Americas, the new Chicago Street Course, Michigan International Speedway, and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.

While this may seem like a minor announcement, it confirms an important change to Live Fast Motorsports’ approach to their driver lineup.

Since entering the Cup Series in 2021, McLeod has been the driver of the No. 78 car in all of the oval races except for the dirt races at Bristol Motor Speedway.

In 2021, he competed in 28 of 36 races on the schedule, and in 2022, he competed in 29 of 36. The team called upon other drivers to compete in the two dirt races and the 13 road course races.

In 2021, Shane Golobic competed in the dirt race. Scott Heckert and Kyle Tilley each competed in three road course races, and Andy Lally competed in one. In 2022, Josh Williams competed in the dirt race and two road course races. Tilley competed in two road course races, and Heckert and Lally each competed in one.

With Bilicki set to compete at Michigan International Speedway, this marks the first time that McLeod won’t compete in a non-dirt oval race since Live Fast Motorsports entered the Cup Series two years ago.

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McLeod is still set to compete in select races throughout the 2023 season, though his full schedule is not yet confirmed. The season is scheduled to get underway with the 65th annual Daytona 500, which is set to be broadcast live on Fox from Daytona International Speedway beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, February 19.